Best Text Editor/Code Validator/etc

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by Arisian, Jun 5, 2008.

  1. Arisian macrumors 68000


    Sep 14, 2007
    Hello Gents,

    Quick question for you all. I realize this forum says nothing about 'web related questions', however, I can't contain myself. I apologize in advance.

    I am looking for the BEST third party text editor out there for the purposes of writing PHP, javascript, html, and AJAX related programming. The situation that I am in is this:

    I've been a professional web developer for the last 6 years and have worked for a large company(waaaay too large... 6000 + full time employees... yikes, i know!) for the last 2 years doing web development all using windows machines. Ive found that I've grown accustomed to using Textpad ( for PHP,java, and ajax and obvious Visual studio for all the automation/C++/C#/.net(hey, not my choice!).

    I've used iCode for a bit and found it a little tedious. Yes, it did quiet a bit and there is a good chance I'm just ignorant to how to use it efficiently.

    I am quiting my corporate job and going to full-time freelance work. I've been a mac user for the last 5 years, but havent spent much time building complex websites in iCode on my mac due to the fact that most of my development work is at in Windowsland.

    Can you guys drop a big load of wisdom and experience on me with any and all tools that I could use for javascript validation (safari... and what else?), php + html annotation etc, ajax, etc.... Are there better editors out there than iCode?

    Thanks guys, again ignore my ignorance... or just drop a bunch of sarcastic comments on me as well... i think i can take it. I apologize if this question has been answered before, i did search...

  2. yeroen macrumors 6502a


    Mar 8, 2007
    Cambridge, MA
    Never heard of you mean Xcode?

    As a C/C++ *nix programmer I use emacs and vim, but that probably isn't the sort of thing you're looking for.

    For pure editors, I think you'd really dig TextMate. It has bundles for all the languages you mentioned and much more, plus syntax validation for PHP, HTML, etc.

    Of course, since you're doing all web stuff, shouldn't you be using Dreamweaver?
  3. macfreek57 macrumors 6502

    Jan 1, 2002
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
    I agree

    I've used TextMate and it's pretty amazing. I haven't used it for any web development, mostly C++ and Java for my Computer Science assignments. As a coding text editor, it's a cut above XCode's built-in editor as it is just generally easier to use and more feature rich than XCode. And of course it's a bit more suitable if you're not using the project-level control that XCode has.
    I haven't done any web development on a Mac -- just Visual Studio and Dreamweaver on Windows. It seems like Dreamweaver will be your best bet on a Mac.
  4. Arisian thread starter macrumors 68000


    Sep 14, 2007

    xCode... I apologize... wasn't thinking, but again... I did say I dont use it much, to my credit. As far as dream weaver goes, the last time I used that must have been 10 years ago and from what I remember it was just a messy WYSIWYG that made a horribly inconsistent, non-standards compliant mess of things. I do all of my design by hand in a textpad/wordpad type setting. Just used to it that way and Im used to doing it all in a way that writes clean, simple, fast, standards compliant code.

    Granted, I haven't keep up with Dreamweavers development for quiet some time. I wonder what features are offered there. I'll def. have to give it another look

    Thanks guys for the suggestions with the text editors you mentioned.

    Any more you would add to this conversation would be appreciated.
  5. HiRez macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2004
    Western US
    TextMate is great, I own it, but the one thing that drives me nuts about it is the undo system. It undoes typing ONE CHARACTER AT A TIME. This may sound like a small thing but it becomes incredibly annoying while coding (at least for me). The developer is apparently aware of the issue but does not consider it very important since it's been there a long time.

    I like xCode for Objective-C/Cocoa coding, for other stuff like Python, JavaScript, and HTML, I use TextMate.

    The new kid on the block, slanted towards web development, is Coda. I haven't used it yet, but a lot of people really seem to like it. For coding (and even in Terminal) I recommend ripping off Panic's Panic Sans font (you can get it out of the Coda bundle), it's an excellent code font:

    Picture 1.png
  6. iShater macrumors 604


    Aug 13, 2002
  7. Epicurus macrumors 6502


    Apr 28, 2005
    Minneapolis, MN
    I started with hand-coding websites with what is now called TextWrangler (after I abandoned Dreamweaver years ago). Its free and gets most of the basics right. If I ever land on a machine that I don't have time to set up properly, I still just install TextWrangler and get right back to work. Anyway, after a while I made another jump to TextMate. It has a lot more strength, in areas that I'll never fully appreciate. In the areas that I did use it, it never let me down (although I would say that it has a decent learning curve if you want to take advantage of it properly). Recently, since I've had to take control of a lot more websites than I was planning on, I've moved to Coda. It keeps me from messing with Fetch anymore, it lets me see all my sites at a glance, and it has a very decent text editor. I still miss things about TextMate sometimes, just as I miss things about CSSEdit. I still keep all the apps from my old workflow installed on all my Macs, but I hardly ever use them anymore. The more I use Coda, the more I learn to love it! What's more, I can hardly wait to see what the next few versions of Coda will bring (considering that the 1.0 product was so comprehensive).
  8. GroovyLinuxGuy macrumors regular


    Apr 2, 2006
  9. apfhex macrumors 68030


    Aug 8, 2006
    Northern California
    I like the integration Coda offers; the built-in FTP with one click Publish button (and the ability to manually mark files for uploading of course) is awesome. However I've been trying out CSSEdit and wow! I don't know if I can go back to anything else. Turns out one of my favorite features is the live preview and I want to now have the same thing for HTML (if MacRabbit made an "HTMLEdit" I'd be all over it). I just downloaded one called HyperEdit which has a live preview, but I haven't tried it yet.

    At work I do some website work with not too demanding requirements (any text editor suffices, just editing HTML really). I've tried TextMate briefly and maybe I just don't need the things it offers, because it didn't seem worth it to me. I currently use SubEthaEdit (an old version). I like the ability to show directories in the title bar because I work on multiple files with the same name that go in different locations. And even though I don't use the collaborative features, the ability to highlight edits that I've made is nifty. Oh, and it works with the "edit in external editor" button in CyberDuck. :) The person who worked on the machine before me used TextWranger, but I didn't like the interface (annoying window display options that you couldn't set permanently, different text sizes for different documents, stuff like that).

    We also have a copy of Dreamweaver MX 2004 which I use on occasion (good for editing complex tables!) but in general I don't like it. The interface is awful and it's slow and unstable — same goes for GoLive actually, which I used to use at home (but only because it came with Adobe CS2 Professional) but haven't touched in a long time.
  10. Aranince macrumors 65816

    Apr 18, 2007
    The new Dreamweaver version does follow the standards..I havent used it so I can't tell you how accurate it is...but it does follow the standards.
  11. janey macrumors 603


    Dec 20, 2002
    sunny los angeles
    hi :D

    I'm not surprised about the TextMate/Xcode/Coda mentions, but I am surprised nobody in this thread has mentioned Aptana yet!
  12. adrian.oconnor macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2008
    Nottingham, England
    I second Aptana! It's really good for PHP, Javascript, HTML and Rails.

    You will probably need to replace the functionality of the .NET runtime and SQLServer at some point (unless you are a designer, not a programmer). If you choose Java (which is excellent, BTW, despite the rhetoric), then the Netbeans IDE is free and almost on a par with Visual Studio. NetBeans also has plugins for many other languages. I use NetBeans for Ruby too.

    Postgres is an amazing database server, though it's more like Oracle than SQLServer so you might find that there's a bit of a steep learning curve to start with.

    Good luck! Freelancing is the best!
  13. Arisian thread starter macrumors 68000


    Sep 14, 2007
    First off, let me complement you guys. Not only did you answer my question(s) without being sarcastic ******s, but you guys gave me tons of resources. I'm sure I'm going to have to go and take a look at all of these and find the one that I like the best. That being the case, I really did want to get some hands-on experience rather than a sales pitch.

    I tend to be leaning towards the apps that allow me to do more live publish. I've fooled around with uploading things after finished to see if IE5.0-8.0 have a fit with them, etc. Over the last two years Ive grown accustomed to editing the file directly, or a dev version of the file, and then seeing the changes immediately(or after I code IE 6.0 to not cache... *sigh*... Big corporate america is still inlove with IE 6.0 and its non-standards compliant ways...)

    Nonetheless, thanks so much for the help you guys. It's good to see there are some people on this forum that don't turn everything into a chance to make a fool of someone else.


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